Agency history, 1957-

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  • Pachter, Marc
  • Glass, Brent D
  • Taylor, Frank A (Frank Augustus) 1903-2007
  • Multhauf, Robert P
  • Boorstin, Daniel J (Daniel Joseph) 1914-2004
  • Hindle, Brooke
  • Kennedy, Roger G
  • Ewers, John C (John Canfield) 1909-1997
  • Crew, Spencer R. 1949-
  • Gray, John
  • Fruchter, Susan
  • Hartig, Anthea M
  • National Portrait Gallery (Smithsonian Institution)
  • United States National Museum
  • National Museum of History and Technology (U.S.)


Agency History


  • This is an agency history. It does not describe actual records. The Smithsonian Institution Archives uses these histories as brief accounts of the origin, development, and functions of an office or administrative unit to set that unit in its historical context. To find information on record holdings, please double-click the highlighted field "Creator/Author", which will open on a brief view of relevant records.
  • Guide to the Smithsonian Archives
  • The Torch, November 2002
  • The National Museum of American History (NMAH) was created as part of the United States National Museum on July 1, 1957. It was at first named the Museum of History and Technology. Its first Director, Frank A. Taylor, was appointed on April 16, 1958. He was succeeded by John Canfield Ewers, 1964-1965, and Robert P. Multhauf, 1966-1968. In 1969 the museum received a new name, the National Museum of History and Technology, and a new Director, Daniel J. Boorstin. On Boorstin's resignation in 1973 he was succeeded by Brooke Hindle, 1974-1978. Roger G. Kennedy became Director in 1979 and remained Director after NMHT was renamed the National Museum of American History in 1980, serving until 1992. He was succeeded by Spencer R. Crew who at first was Acting Director, 1992-1994, and then Director, 1994-2001. With Crew's departure in 2001, Marc J. Pachter, Director of National Portrait Gallery, served as Acting Director of NMAH until Brent D. Glass was appointed Director of the museum in 2002. Glass resigned in July 2011 and was succeeded by Pachter, Acting Director, 2011-2012, and John Gray, Director, 2012-2018. Susan Fruchter, Deputy Director of NMAH since October 2012, became Interim Director of the museum when Gray retired in May 2018. In 2019, Anthea M. Hartig became Director.
  • The Director is the chief administrative officer of the National Museum of American History.
  • For a history of the larger creating unit, refer to "Forms part of" above.

Repository Loc.

Smithsonian Institution Archives, Capital Gallery, Suite 3000, MRC 507; 600 Maryland Avenue, SW; Washington, DC 20024-2520


  • 1957
  • 1957-


  • Historical museums
  • Science museums


Mixed archival materials

Local number

SIA AH00077

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